Life after Hain…

MARK Devenport speculates over who could be announced as the next Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on Thursday. Could Parliamentary Under Secretary of State Paul Goggins leapfrog a Minister of State’s position into Hillsborough? Or is there more to the former Tory shadow SoS Quentin Davies’ defection to Labour? Davies denied a deal over a Cabinet position earlier today – though someone who carries out a surprise total U-turn might fit in nicely Here. My guess is no – as a Tory, Davies ended a long period of bipartisan UK policy on Northern Ireland when he attacked Labour’s decision to reinstate Commons offices to Sinn Fein MPs despite their refusal to swear the oath of allegiance to the Queen. All this speculation is assuming the NISoS’s post still exists – Peter Hain thinks he’s the last direct rule SoS Here, and there’s been some speculation that regional devolution will mean a single minister to look after Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. But then Hain’s been wrong about a lot of things lately.

  • Keith

    In the spirit of Browne’s new found admiration for cross party cabinet positions he might go with our very own Lord Trimble.

    Oh what a return…